Trauma-Informed Music

dawn1400x1400
On July 9, 2013 “Dawn” became available for sale on CD Baby, Amazon, Tower Records, Spotify, iTunes, etc. On February 1, 2014, we are reporting Gerry Vassar’s review on his blog for Lakeside Educational Network.

In our chief project center, I was asked to develop an album of music that would facilitate the wake up time of a group of pre-adolescents with a view toward resilience and provide a positive step toward self-modulation. This would be a more difficult task than the “Peace” or the “wind-down” project which is also being tested at this time. Based on some research, discussion, and intuition, I started down the road with these presuppositions:

1. The music would be instrumental, highlighting the effect of the music itself rather than text.
2. The music would be non-familiar, thus limiting the impact of memory.
3. The music would be fun, using approaches like “toning” to enhance a light-hearted first start.
4. The music would contain beat and an approach to heart rate that would be progressive.
5. The music would try to find a pop/hip hop fusion which would be contemporary and relevant.

This album has been field tested over the past couple of months, which resulted in adaptations. Whereas there is a lot of research on slower music that calms the mind and slows the heart, and a lot of research about how engaging and participating in the faster music can add and enhance dopamine to the participant, there is nota lot of research on the addition of groove-centered hip hop instrumental music serving in a background role in an environment. Today’s schools and agencies will have the existing “soundtrack” of yelling kids and staff and leadership raising their tones of voice to try to control the air and focus the student. In the morning, something fun, light, and beat centered might help, and in a way that doesn’t focus the client onto a hip hop message that tracks them to a memory or a state of being that is harmful to their resilience.

Next month, we will be testing this album on the walkways of a campus close to here that has the wherewithal to go with…..a track….a sensory room…… wowzirs! This thing should have some options for us.

Stanford Report, May 31, 2006
Feeling the beat: Symposium explores the therapeutic effects of rhythmic music
BY EMILY SAARMAN

Rhythmic music may change brain function and treat a range of neurological conditions, including attention deficit disorder and depression, suggested scientists who gathered with ethnomusicologists and musicians at Stanford’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics May 13. The diverse group came together for the one-day symposium, “Brainwave Entrainment to External Rhythmic Stimuli: Interdisciplinary Research and Clinical Perspectives,” to share ideas that push the boundaries of our understanding of the human musical experience.

Musicians and mystics have long recognized the power of rhythmic music. Ritual drumming and rhythmic prayer are found in cultures throughout the world and are used in religious ceremonies to induce trance states. But since the counterculture movement of the 1960s, scientists have shied away from investigating the almost mystical implications of musical rhythm, said symposium organizer Gabe Turow, a visiting scholar in the Department of Music.

Recent interest in sleep, meditation and hypnosis research has spurred scientists to take a closer look at music. A small but growing body of scientific evidence suggests that music and other rhythmic stimuli can alter mental states in predictable ways and even heal damaged brains.

“I think we’ve started using the right words to talk about these experiences, words that kept everyone comfortable,” Turow said.

Devices called electroencephalographs (EEGs) measure the electrical impulses in the brain. Although EEG measurements cannot clearly discern spatial patterns, they resolve the dominant frequencies of brainwave activity that are associated with conscious states including concentration, anxiety and sleep.

“There is a growing body of neuroscientists who support the theory that if there’s a physical correlate of conscious experience, it has to be happening in the brainwaves. It seems to be the only thing in your head that changes rapidly enough to explain real-time changes in consciousness,” Turow said.

Music with a strong beat stimulates the brain and ultimately causes brainwaves to resonate in time with the rhythm, research has shown. Slow beats encourage the slow brainwaves that are associated with hypnotic or meditative states. Faster beats may encourage more alert and concentrated thinking.

Studies of rhythms and the brain have shown that a combination of rhythmic light and sound stimulation has the greatest effect on brainwave frequency, although sound alone can change brain activity. This helps explain the significance of rhythmic sound in religious ceremonies.

“It’s too easy to forget how fundamental rhythm is in so many things and how important musical rhythm can be,” said symposium participant Patrick Suppes, the Lucie Stern Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus, at Stanford, who studies brainwaves and language cognition.

Harold Russell, a clinical psychologist and adjunct research professor in the Department of Gerontology and Health Promotion at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, used rhythmic light and sound stimulation to treat ADD (attention deficit disorder) in elementary and middle school boys. His studies found that rhythmic stimuli that sped up brainwaves in subjects increased concentration in ways similar to ADD medications such as Ritalin and Adderall. Following a series of 20-minute treatment sessions administered over several months, the children made lasting gains in concentration and performance on IQ tests and had a notable reduction in behavioral problems compared to the control group, Russell said.

“For most of us, the brain is locked into a particular level of functioning,” the psychologist said. “If we ultimately speed up or slow down the brainwave activity, then it becomes much easier for the brain to shift its speed as needed.”

Russell, whose study was funded by the U.S. Department of Education and included 40 experimental subjects, hopes to earn approval from the Food and Drug Administration to use the brainwave entrainment device as a treatment for ADD. The device uses an EEG to read brainwaves and then presents rhythmic light and sound stimuli through special eyeglasses and headphones at a slightly higher frequency than the brain’s natural rhythm.

Thomas Budzynski, an affiliate professor of psychology at the University of Washington, conducted similar experiments with a small group of underachieving college students at Western Washington University. He found that rhythmic light and sound therapy helped students achieve a significant improvement in their grades.

Budzynski also found that rhythmic therapy could improve cognitive functioning in some elderly people by increasing blood flow throughout the brain. “The brain tends to groove on novel stimuli,” Budzynski explained. “When a novel stimulus is applied to the brain, the brain lights up and cerebral blood flow increases.” To maintain the high blood flow, Budzynski used a random alternation of rhythmic lights and sounds to stimulate the brains of elderly people. The result: Many of the seniors improved performance on an array of cognitive tests.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that this increased blood flow also could help victims of brain damage regain cognitive function. Russell used brainwave entrainment to help his wife recover from a severe stroke. “One day she told me the fog went away,” he said.

Neuroscientists caution that there is still a great deal to learn. “While these things are intriguing, we haven’t worked out the perceptual pathways in the brain for processing hearing as well as we have for visual and sensory perception,” said David Spiegel, the Jack, Samuel and Lulu Willson Professor in Medicine at Stanford. “Figuring out this entrainment is complicated by the fact that we need to learn more in general about how the brain processes auditory stimuli.”

Most music combines many different frequencies that cause a complex set of reactions in the brain, but researchers say specific pieces of music could enhance concentration or promote relaxation. “If we can get some reliable evidence from neuroscientists that music therapy works, music is cheap and nearly anybody can get access to it,” Russell said.

Brainwave entrainment research is still in its infancy, but advocates hope that it may prove a cheap, safe and effective way to treat a variety of neurological disorders from depression to ADD and even prove invaluable in repairing brain damage.

“We may be sitting on one of the most widely available and cost effective therapeutic modalities that ever existed,” Turow said. “Systematically, this could be like taking a pill. Listening to music seems to be able to change brain functioning to the same extent as medication, in many circumstances.”

Jonathan Berger, chair of the Stanford Department of Music, said he was thrilled with the free flow of ideas at the symposium. “There was no question by the end of the day that this symposium is going to become a regular feature at Stanford,” he said. “I’m pretty confident that this will lead to a new research lab here.” Berger also plans to produce a book based on the research presented at the symposium.

Emily Saarman is a science-writing intern at Stanford News Service

maintain1400x1400

We were approached to compose an album like “Dawn” that would be indicative of a brain that encompasses trials and tribulations early in the day. I am not smart enough to detect what elements in music can be used to help the brain see an obstacle and then steer through it. In my own life, my power walking has helped give me the energy and the courage to continue through them, so hence the face paced style of this album.

In late January, Gerry Vassar of Lakeside Educational Network posted the following review of “Maintain:” http://lakesideconnect.com/trauma-and-trauma-informed-care/lakesides-music-therapy-the-maintain-cd/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

On Monday, October 7, “Maintain” was put out on itunes and other digital domains. Our testing of it over the next few months is to see if it can enhance a “walking” approach to self-regulation in schools and centers where there are behaviors that are difficult to overcome. Further results will be posted here. On October 11, this article of research done by Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School confirmed that endurance exercise is key to neuroprotective effects. In my work with long walking (80 miles in September 2013), the album called “MAINTAIN” is part of trying to develop the atmosphere that can help.

Molecule Produced During Exercise Boosts Brain Health, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School Study
10/11/2013 7:05:39 AM

Research has shown that exercise is good for the brain. Now investigators have identified a molecule called irisin that is produced in the brain during endurance exercise and has neuroprotective effects. Researchers were able to artificially increase the levels of irisin in the blood to activate genes involved in learning and memory. The findings, published online October 10 in the Cell Press journal Cell Metabolism, may be useful for designing drugs that utilize this exercise-induced molecule to guard against neurodegenerative diseases and improve cognition in the aging population.

Stanford Report, May 31, 2006
Feeling the beat: Symposium explores the therapeutic effects of rhythmic music
BY EMILY SAARMAN
(See writing above under “Dawn”)

breeze1400x1400

In the first series of Trauma Informed Music, I proposed that original unfamiliar instrumental music put in an environment would reduce the level of stress, anxiety, and trauma for the people in that environment. “Breeze” presupposes a level of trauma in what is normally known as “quitting time” for people starting to transition into the evening hours. This is a shift or a transition that music can assist. “Dawn” was developed to get everyone up and running. “Breeze” starts the process of a gentle wind-down. Slower tempos and groove tracks that are more undercover but not ready to put us all to sleep. You will hear this as the pace goes from an orchestra down to a solo piano at the end.

Gerry Vassar recently reviewed this CD on his blog in late January, 2014.
http://lakesideconnect.com/teen-issues/lakesides-music-therapy-the-breeze-cd/#more-9760

Some of these songs were written with specific instrumentalists in mind and were performed in various places. Thanks to those people who were part of that experience!

On September 25, this album has established a slower sense of a hip hop influence and have been happy with its beginning or ending the day influence. I walk most often to this album in the evening. I have found this to be a nice place of melodoy and rhythm.

In some circles or agencies, the presence of beat alone could be a more appropriate “wake up” then “Dawn”. To me, this is the music that is front-office….by the receptionist’s desk….in the director’s office……in the time-out room in the afternoon…..in the hallway between classes. One thing we are investigating with this music is the placement of how the brain processes “next.” For many of us, going home might be a good thing. But for a lot of us, going home is not such a great thing. Can music somehow help the brain prepare for “next” if next is not that pleasureable an experience? (http://www.athleticinsight.com/Vol10Iss2/Music.htm)

focus1400x1400

This page will enhance and track the album called “Focus”, a CD being completed in July-August of 2013 for the Trauma Informed Music approach. At this point, there is the theory being advanced that in a “Mozart” kind of effect, background music can and will enhance education as kind of a “more than glorified background noise.”

On August 27, the songs for Focus at this point are all done, and the setting for research is in place in fall 2013 for the testing of research in two sites. This album will be divided into sections for teachers to use it in classes.

On September 9, 2013, we will begin a series of training and discussion with teachers who are willing to be using this music under their teaching. During this current week in prep we will begin to whittle the album back as we discern what music will be the best to start this procedure.

On September 25, 2013, we have had discussions with school teachers who are utilizing this album to serve as a class soundtrack. We are beginning the process of evaluation and weighing research options. Our current release date of this album will be October 6. It is now available on itunes and other digital domains.

On November 1, 2013, I witnessed two classes being taught with this principle in mind, and I was pleased with what I saw. With volatile kids, the music kind of helped put a calming filter on the atmosphere.

It is articles like the one below that give us hints in that music can enhance cognitive learning in students in school situations (See also: http://med.stanford.edu/news_releases/2007/july/music.html) We are currently testing this process out to see if this is in fact the case. The album called “Focus” has a series of instrumental songs that are all50 beats per minute or less. All instrumental. We are starting next week with our discussion with teachers.

file:///Users/jmh_music/Dropbox/Trauma%20Music%20Research/Surprising%20Effects%20Of%20Music.webarchive

Music moves brain to pay attention, Stanford study finds
By Mitzi Baker

This 20-second clip of a subject’s fMRI illustrates how cognitive activity increases in anticipation of the transition points between movements.
STANFORD, Calif. — Using brain images of people listening to short symphonies by an obscure 18th-century composer, a research team from the Stanford University School of Medicine has gained valuable insight into how the brain sorts out the chaotic world around it.

The research team showed that music engages the areas of the brain involved with paying attention, making predictions and updating the event in memory. Peak brain activity occurred during a short period of silence between musical movements—when seemingly nothing was happening.

Beyond understanding the process of listening to music, their work has far-reaching implications for how human brains sort out events in general. Their findings are published in the Aug. 2 issue of Neuron.

The researchers caught glimpses of the brain in action using functional magnetic resonance imaging, or fMRI, which gives a dynamic image showing which parts of the brain are working during a given activity. The goal of the study was to look at how the brain sorts out events, but the research also revealed that musical techniques used by composers 200 years ago help the brain organize incoming information.

“In a concert setting, for example, different individuals listen to a piece of music with wandering attention, but at the transition point between movements, their attention is arrested,” said the paper’s senior author Vinod Menon, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and of neurosciences.

“I’m not sure if the baroque composers would have thought of it in this way, but certainly from a modern neuroscience perspective, our study shows that this is a moment when individual brains respond in a tightly synchronized manner,” Menon said.

The team used music to help study the brain’s attempt to make sense of the continual flow of information the real world generates, a process called event segmentation. The brain partitions information into meaningful chunks by extracting information about beginnings, endings and the boundaries between events.

“These transitions between musical movements offer an ideal setting to study the dynamically changing landscape of activity in the brain during this segmentation process,” said Devarajan Sridharan, a neurosciences graduate student trained in Indian percussion and first author of the article.

No previous study, to the researchers’ knowledge, has directly addressed the question of event segmentation in the act of hearing and, specifically, in music. To explore this area, the team chose pieces of music that contained several movements, which are self-contained sections that break a single work into segments. They chose eight symphonies by the English late-baroque period composer William Boyce (1711-79), because his music has a familiar style but is not widely recognized, and it contains several well-defined transitions between relatively short movements.

The study focused on movement transitions—when the music slows down, is punctuated by a brief silence and begins the next movement. These transitions span a few seconds and are obvious to even a non-musician—an aspect critical to their study, which was limited to participants with no formal music training.

The researchers attempted to mimic the everyday activity of listening to music, while their subjects were lying prone inside the large, noisy chamber of an MRI machine. Ten men and eight women entered the MRI scanner with noise-reducing headphones, with instructions to simply listen passively to the music.

In the analysis of the participants’ brain scans, the researchers focused on a 10-second window before and after the transition between movements. They identified two distinct neural networks involved in processing the movement transition, located in two separate areas of the brain. They found what they called a “striking” difference between activity levels in the right and left sides of the brain during the entire transition, with the right side significantly more active.

In this foundational study, the researchers conclude that dynamic changes seen in the fMRI scans reflect the brain’s evolving responses to different phases of a symphony. An event change—the movement transition signaled by the termination of one movement, a brief pause, followed by the initiation of a new movement—activates the first network, called the ventral fronto-temporal network. Then a second network, the dorsal fronto-parietal network, turns the spotlight of attention to the change and, upon the next event beginning, updates working memory.

“The study suggests one possible adaptive evolutionary purpose of music,” said Jonathan Berger, PhD, associate professor of music and a musician who is another co-author of the study. Music engages the brain over a period of time, he said, and the process of listening to music could be a way that the brain sharpens its ability to anticipate events and sustain attention.

According to the researchers, their findings expand on previous functional brain imaging studies of anticipation, which is at the heart of the musical experience. Even non-musicians are actively engaged, at least subconsciously, in tracking the ongoing development of a musical piece, and forming predictions about what will come next. Typically in music, when something will come next is known, because of the music’s underlying pulse or rhythm, but what will occur next is less known, they said.

Having a mismatch between what listeners expect to hear vs. what they actually hear—for example, if an unrelated chord follows an ongoing harmony—triggers similar ventral regions of the brain. Once activated, that region partitions the deviant chord as a different segment with distinct boundaries.

The results of the study “may put us closer to solving the cocktail party problem—how it is that we are able to follow one conversation in a crowded room of many conversations,” said one of the co-authors, Daniel Levitin, PhD, a music psychologist from McGill University who has written a popular book called This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession.

Chris Chafe, PhD, the Duca Family Professor of Music at Stanford, also contributed to this work. This research was supported by grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the National Science Foundation, the Ben and A. Jess Shenson Fund, the National Institutes of Health and a Stanford graduate fellowship. The fMRI analysis was performed at the Stanford Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Laboratory.

Researchers want to better understand what happens in your brain when you listen to music.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS:
Music was shown to lower anxiety more than medications in one study
Brain activation patterns are related to how much people like particular songs
Consistent activity patterns are seen when different people listen to the same music
Researchers may gain insights into neurological and psychiatric issues

(CNN) — Whether you are rocking out to Macklemore & Ryan Lewis in your car or reading with Bach in your bedroom, music has a special ability to pump us up or calm us down.
Scientists are still trying to figure out what’s going on in our brains when we listen to music and how it produces such potent effects on the psyche.
“We’re using music to better understand brain function in general,” said Daniel Levitin, a prominent psychologist who studies the neuroscience of music at McGill University in Montreal.
Three studies published this month explore how the brain responds to music. The quest to dissect exactly what chemical processes occur when we put our headphones on is far from over, but scientists have come across some clues.
Health benefits of music

Listening to music feels good, but can that translate into physiological benefit? Levitin and colleagues published a meta-analysis of 400 studies in the journal Trends in Cognitive Sciences, suggesting the answer is yes.
In one study reviewed, researchers studied patients who were about to undergo surgery. Participants were randomly assigned to either listen to music or take anti-anxiety drugs. Scientists tracked patient’s ratings of their own anxiety, as well as the levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
The results: The patients who listened to music had less anxiety and lower cortisol than people who took drugs. Levitin cautioned that this is only one study, and more research needs to be done to confirm the results, but it points toward a powerful medicinal use for music.
“The promise here is that music is arguably less expensive than drugs, and it’s easier on the body and it doesn’t have side effects,” Levitin said.
Levitin and colleagues also highlighted evidence that music is associated with immunoglobin A, an antibody linked to immunity, as well as higher counts of cells that fight germs and bacteria.

Making music sound ‘better’
More: How music changes the brain

What music we like:
So music is good for us, but how do we judge what music is pleasurable? A study published in the journal Science suggests that patterns of brain activity can indicate whether a person likes what he or she is hearing.
Valorie Salimpoor, a researcher at the Rotman Research Institute in Toronto and former Levitin student, led a study in which participants listened to 60 excerpts of music they had never heard before while in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machine.
The 19 participants were asked to indicate how much money they would spend on a given song when listening to the excerpts, while also allowing researchers to analyze patterns of brain activity through the fMRI. Such a small number of participants is common in an fMRI study for reasons of complexity and cost, although it suggests more research should be done.
The study authors highlight in their results a brain area called the nucleus accumbens, which is involved in forming expectations.
“There is actually a network of activity that predicts whether or not you’re going to buy this music as you’re listening to the music,” Salimpoor said.
The more activity in the nucleus accumbens, the more money people said they were willing to spend on any particular song in the “auction” set-up that the researchers designed.
“This was an indicator that some sort of reward-related expectations were met or surpassed,” she said.
Another brain area called the superior temporal gyrus is intimately involved in the experience of music, and its connection to the nucleus accumbens is important, she said. The genres of music that a person listens to over a lifetime impact how the superior temporal gyrus is formed.
The superior temporal gyrus alone doesn’t predict whether a person likes a given piece of music, but it’s involved in storing templates from what you’ve heard before. For instance, a person who has heard a lot of jazz before is more likely to appreciate a given piece of jazz music than someone with a lot less experience.
“The brain kind of works like a music recommendation system,” Salimpoor said.

You can listen to the clips that the researchers used in the study here.
Levitin called the findings “interesting,” but views it as a refinement of what other laboratories have found in the past. He and Vinod Menon at Stanford University were the first to show the role of the nucleus accumbens in music in 2005.
Beholding beauty: How it’s been studied
Are we all hearing the same thing?
It seems intuitive that different people, based on their personalities, preferences and personal histories of listening to particular music, will have different experiences when exposed to a particular piece of music. Their attention to various details will vary and they might like different things about it.
But Levitin and his collaborators showed in a European Journal of Neuroscience study that, from the perspective of the brain, there may be more similarities among music listeners than you think.
“Despite our idiosyncrasies in listening, the brain experiences music in a very consistent fashion across subjects,” said Daniel Abrams, lead author and postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University School of Medicine.
Seventeen participants who had little or no music training took part in this study which, like Salimpoor’s, is small, but typical for an fMRI study. Participants listened to four symphonies by composer William Boyce of the late Baroque period, which the researchers chose because they reflect Western music but were likely to be unfamiliar to subjects.
Among participants, the researchers found synchronization in several key brain areas, and similar brain activity patterns in different people who listen to the same music. This suggests that the participants not only perceive the music the same way, but, despite whatever personal differences they brought to the table, there’s a level on which they share a common experience.
Brain regions involved in movement, attention, planning and memory consistently showed activation when participants listened to music — these are structures that don’t have to do with auditory processing itself. This means that when we experience of music, a lot of other things are going on beyond merely processing sound, Abrams said.
One resulting theory is that these brain areas are involved in holding particular parts of a song, such as the melody, in the mind while the rest of the piece of music plays on, Abrams said.
The results also reflect the power of music to unite people, Levitin said.
“It’s not our natural tendency to thrust ourselves into a crowd of 20,000 people, but for a Muse concert or a Radiohead concert we’ll do it,” Levitin said. “There’s this unifying force that comes from the music, and we don’t get that from other things.”
Further research might compare how individuals with healthy brains differ in their musical listening compared to people with autism or other brain disorders, Abrams said.
“The methods that we’ve used can be applied to understand how the brain tracks auditory information over time,” Abrams said.
What the brain draws from: Art and neuroscience

What’s next:
The next frontier in the neuroscience of music is to look more carefully at which chemicals in the brain are involved in music listening and performing, Levitin said, and in which parts of the brain are they active.
Any given neurochemical can have different function depending on its area of the brain, he said. For instance, dopamine helps increase attention in the frontal lobes, but in the limbic system it is associated with pleasure.

peace1400x1400

Greetings, and welcome to our world of trauma informed music (TIM). Trauma informed music is therapeutically designed for enhancing life, relational and emotional development for individuals and groups.

Project One: Peace (Origin, December 2012)

Our first project is called PEACE, and is designed ideally for the wind down time at night, for sleep, for rest, or general re-modulating and guidance in self-regulation. It can be used in groups or by individuals, and at the four month mark has yielded everything from little effect to dramatic effect. We are working out the details and will be in continuing process with this.

The genesis for the project came from sitting in on a variety of meetings with families whose kids show a wide assortment of behavior challenges, including ADHD. The theory is whether music played at bedtime and in the first cycle of sleep can help modulate or regulate the expression and experience of these behavior challenges. In field testing the music, I found that my own sleep habits were changing, some from the music and some from the routine of winding down more effectively. I have also discovered that how people approach the music and feel about it at bedtime gives the therapist or counselor some insights and entry points that may not have come in normal dialogues, dyads, or interactions. We contend that a sound musical diet is more important to the brain than many might believe.

At this writing, December 26, 2013, we are:

1. The”Peace” project has been implemented with two professional educational facilities to take this project and start discussions about the framing and the compilation of data needed to explore the ability of this music to provide both regulative care and nurture to the child and the teen as they begin and enter into their sleep and rest patterns. Also, using music we believe to be calmer in the life of a child, teen, or adult, can move their brains to better self-regulation, and better refreshment upon their waking. The album has released on itunes, CDBaby, Spotify, Amazon, and other sites and is available for folks who are in need of the “peace” this album can hopefully give.

2. Beginning the process of documenting the impact of the album. At this writing, the response has been positive. Most adults have processed the “sleep” part well, but we haven’t processed the effect on the waking up side of things. ADHD kids for the most part, have done well with it. One autistic child could not sleep to it and we are still researching that. As some people struggle to let the music “take them” to sleep, a lot is being discovered about personal traumas and anxieties.

3. Realizing the importance of relationships and music. In discussions with “peace” folks, we have seen an increase in sleep although we can’t verify with statistics. Claudia and I are in month 13 of the project, and sleep is remarkable in my experience, going from 5 to 6 hours a night to 8.

If you are suffering from a true sleep disorder, please contact a physician before experimenting with this or any other sleep enhancement product or project. I will be checking with you to see what your comments and experiences are with these songs. Or, you can write me at joeheshmusic.com

Joe Hesh

Things About the Music of “Peace”:

1. This is a series of recordings that use digital sounds, mostly from the library of Logic Pro and Garage Band performed on a Roland Fantom Xa keyboard.
2. This is a series of recordings that is in test mode and is by no means a finished project.
3. My theory is that music that is less familiar will be more appropriate for sleep rather than being a familiar song that will enhance and engage a memory.
4. All music is written, owned and copyrighted by Joe Hesh. Do not share these songs or the CD.
5. Everyone has their own sleep rituals and routines. I have listed below some of mine that shows how I am training my ear and my brain to accommodate the calming music.
6. As the music regimen is tweaked, I may be giving you updates and calling for the old CD back.
7. I have played the music each night on an iPod Touch through an Insignia (cheap at Best Buy) dock and clock radio. I usually have the volume on 6 or 7 to clear over the sound of the air purifier.
8. I found the combination of air purifier and music necessary for a couple of reasons. First is my prescribed tinnitus, which the air purifier can somewhat neutralize. Plus, the presence of music in a still or quiet atmosphere harder to shut down than with the underlay of white noise.
9. The air purifier’s tone and pitch is less like white noise and more the texture and pitch of “pink noise” in my opinion.
10. Currently, the music on the CD or playlist is composed of 13 songs I have written and arranged. Melodies have had inspirations and influences by other composers and songwriters.
11. The music was finished at the Aspenbreeze Studio in Colorado Springs,CO by Jeff Nicholson.

Things to state about how I processed this music in my own sleep.

1. I have listened to this regimen of music in the order it appears since December 1, 2012.
2. My last intake of television normally stopped at 11.
3. I ran an air purifier which mimicked a white noise sound in the background. I then ran the soundtrack over the top of that sound.
3. Any exercising that was done at bedtime was more muscle building and yoga rather than cardiovascular.
4. I weeded out vocals from my first mix of music on The Sleep Project playlist. Instrumental music works better.
5. My wife who must get up several times each night for medical reasons. On most occasions this did not disturb the experience.
6. I have endured my own set of traumas and trauma triggers over the past year
7. During my work career, I have had a hard time shutting down. During this project my sleep has consistently grown nearly an hour a night. There is at this writing (March 12) a little bit of erratic sleep behavior over the last two evenings, stemming, I believe, from the spring time change.

Articles on why music can help sleep:

http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2012/08/13/the-twenty-four-hour-mind-rosalind-cartwright/.…..can music effect the emotional state of a person in the first REM of sleep?

“dreaming modulates disturbances in emotion, regulating those that are troublesome. My research, as well as that of other investigators in this country and abroad, supports this theory. Studies show that negative mood is down-regulated overnight.” (Cartwright)…..(can music assist in this down-regulation?)

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/body/walker-sleep.html….(ok, this article shows that you can’t learn as you sleep, since the brain doesn’t ingest new cognitive information but rather focuses externally, but what about emotion?)

http://www.ehow.com/info_8315514_types-effects-music-dreams.html……(talks about how music affects dreams even to the point of bringing energy and creativity when the person wakes.)

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